AUSTIN, Texas - Travis County Commissioners Court voted Tuesday to let a local ankle monitoring business into the mix of vendors.
Christopher Moore has been trying to get his ankle monitoring business into Travis County. He says only two companies, Victim Safety First and Recovery Healthcare, have been running the market. Recovery Healthcare only provides for alcohol-related offenses.
"I think people like options. You have an option of where to go eat. You have an option for what you want to wear, where you want to buy it," said Moore.
A free market is what he is pushing for so his business can compete with the others they sat before the Travis County Commissioners Court Tuesday to make their case.
"I'm pleased to see the commissioners court recognizes they don't really have to have a monopoly on electronic monitoring in Travis County," said Bill Aleshire, attorney for Safe Monitoring Solutions.
Commissioners voted to let Moore's company into the mix of vendors, putting his business in his home county. They will first need to negotiate a contract before it becomes official.
"A Travis County home-grown business ought to be able to provide those services here in Travis County like they do in all the surrounding counties," said Aleshire.
Representatives from Recovery Healthcare appeared to make sure their company was not eliminated from the mix.
"We rank the highest because we are the most qualified in Travis County. We have a long history of monitoring, lots of cases,” said Terry Fain with Recovery Healthcare.
Safe Monitoring Solutions said they didn't want to monopolize here, they just wanted to enter the market so their clients can have a choice. They say they offer more affordable prices, after-hours jail release, and more. They say they can offer a lot as a historically underutilized business.
"It's going to be a disproportionate number of black and brown ankles in which these bracelets are going to go, and we should be able to have hub participation in that," said Aleshire.